Opioid Epidemic So Dangerous, Says CDC, It’s Finally Killing As Many Americans As Guns
“The opioid epidemic is a real problem in our society, deserving of study and of policy decisions that can help future victims better manage both their pain and their addictions. Regulations of these medicines is essential to ensure the health and safety of the general public, while still ensuring that their medical needs are met. However, with the opioid crisis at its peak, it’s only now reaching the levels that gun fatalities have been at, consistently, for decades. If America believes itself to be a society that values the health and safety of our population, then it’s time to study and combat the very things that threaten it. In science and health, you have to go where the data lead you, no matter how discomforting it is. We have reached a point where our national ideologies and the overwhelming suite of evidence are at odds with each other. If we continue to do nothing, the evidence will continue to build, and so will the death toll.”
We have declared the opioid crisis to be so bad, and such a threat to our society, that it has reached the level of epidemic. According to the CDC, opioid-related deaths have increased by approximately 10,000 cases from 2015 to 2016, with the most significant increases occurring since 2010, in the northeast, and among users of both heroin and synthetic opioids. It is now so bad that, for the first time, opioid-related deaths rival deaths from firearms. Yet while one is receiving national attention, regulations, hundreds or even thousands of scientific studies, and tens of millions in funding to combat it, nothing continues to be done about the hyperendemic problem of gun violence. If you ever wanted to know what the facts were about opioids, guns, fatalities and injuries in the United States, I contacted the CDC to get all the information you could want on the issue.
Take a deep look at the dangers of both opioids and guns, side-by-side, and see what we’re doing, as a nation, and what we need to be doing in order to ensure the health and safety of the general public.